EDINA, Minn. (KMSP) - For many years, some of the hottest names in music could be found in Edina, Minn. recording songs, but now the curtain is about to close for good on the studio which has seen so much history.
Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis’ former Flyte Tyme Studios will be demolished to create an affordable housing complex. Now, owned by Richard McCalley as Runway Studios, the historic music space will have its final swan song.
"It’s bittersweet because this was a dream for us to purchase part of music history of not only Minneapolis, but the world," said Richard McCalley, the owner of Runway Studios.
For 15 years, the building was the base for Jam and Lewis, where they produced songs for everyone from Janet Jackson to Mariah Carey to the Sounds of Blackness.
Janet and her brother Michael Jackson recorded their duet "Scream" inside these walls and it’s where Janet gave her iconic shout out to Minneapolis in her hit “Escapade.”
"Sting, Boyz To Men – it’s a who's who list of the music industry,” said McCalley. “It’s an exciting thing to reflect on, but I don't think it will be duplicated very soon."
Jam and Lewis moved to Los Angeles in 2003, but there are still some remnants from their time in the 18,000 square-foot building. There's the glass block and neon desk and benches in the entryway. Images of great African-American singers, which Lewis commissioned from a local painter, adorn on the ceiling.
Most recently, the room where Janet used to rehearse her dance moves has been used as a practice space by the New Power Generation. Changes in the music industry haven't allowed the building's owners to make a go of it as a state-of-the-art recording studio, so Runway Studios will close its doors later this year.
"I've had some teary moments about the whole situation, but I'm a Christian,” said McCalley. “I trust in God, but I guess this is part of his plan."
Runway Studios will close at the end of October. McCalley says they will try to remove and sell or preserve as many studio fixtures as they can.